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The Dark Unwinding Blog Tour: Interview with Sharon Cameron and Giveaway!

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Through the Looking Glass: The Dark Unwinding Blog Tour: Interview with Sharon Cameron and Giveaway!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Dark Unwinding Blog Tour: Interview with Sharon Cameron and Giveaway!


I am proud to be a part of the marvelous blog tour for Sharon Cameron’s marvelous book, The Dark Unwinding. I love this title so much! Hannah at the Book Vortex organized this blog tour and she did a wonderful job, as usual. You should all go out and get a copy of the Dark Unwinding; it is fantastic! Sharon answered some of my questions and I hope you all enjoy her responses! Below is some more info on Sharon and her book.



Sharon Cameron Author Bio:

Sharon Cameron was awarded the 2009 Sue Alexander Most Promising New Work Award by the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators for her debut novel, The Dark Unwinding. When not writing Sharon can be found thumbing dusty tomes, shooting her longbow, or indulging in her lifelong search for secret passages.

You can find Sharon…

on Twitter: @CameronSharonE
on Facebook: Sharon Cameron’s Page
on her Website:

The Dark Unwinding



The Dark Unwinding by: Sharon Cameron
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Publication Date: September 1, 2012
Genre: Steampunk, Historical, Mystery
Page Count: 318
Buy the Book: Amazon, Barnes and Noble

Summary from Goodreads:

A spine-tingling tale of steampunk and spies, intrigue and heart-racing romance!
When Katharine Tulman's inheritance is called into question by the rumor that her eccentric uncle is squandering away the family fortune, she is sent to his estate to have him committed to an asylum. But instead of a lunatic, Katharine discovers a genius inventor with his own set of rules, who employs a village of nine hundred people rescued from the workhouses of London.
Katharine is now torn between protecting her own inheritance and preserving the peculiar community she grows to care for deeply. And her choices are made even more complicated by a handsome apprentice, a secretive student, and fears for her own sanity.
As the mysteries of the estate begin to unravel, it is clear that not only is her uncle's world at stake, but also the state of England as Katharine knows it. With twists and turns at every corner, this heart-racing adventure will captivate readers with its intrigue, thrills, and romance.

And now for the interview!

Describe The Dark Unwinding in one sentence.
The Dark Unwinding is an eerie gothic mystery with splashes of steampunk, romance, intrigue, and insanity, a bit like Jane Eyre, only with gears!

What kind of research is involved in writing a steampunk novel?
The research for the steampunk aspects of The Dark Unwinding was much more hands on than the other topics I researched (like autism and mental illness). It involved things like listening to a steam engine, or watching clockwork run, or manufacturing gun cotton in the basement and exploding it in the back yard. Really I just needed to know how bad the gun cotton smelled (confirmation: it reeks!), but the opportunity to explode it was more than my husband could resist. Still worried we’ve put ourselves on some sort of FBI list by purchasing all those weird chemicals!

Is there a message in The Dark Unwinding that you want your readers to grasp?
Many! Compassion, and the willingness to stand up and sacrifice for those you love being two of them. But I think one of the more subtle messages in the book is the question: “what is normal?” The Victorians had such rigid ideas of “normality” and Uncle Tully certainly flies in the face of all them. I think one of the major lessons for Katharine is learning to let go of her idea of “proper” and allowing herself to become a free and independent thinker.

What do you think makes a good story?
Tone and atmosphere, to begin with. I’m always hooked immediately when I can “feel” a story from the first few sentences. And of course multi-layered characters with difficult choices make a good story. But I’m always looking for a “great” story, and for me a story becomes “great” when not only am I sucked in by the atmosphere and characters and the plot, but by a deeper meaning that runs beneath it all. It may be a meaning that only I pull out, but that’s okay!

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Not a writer! The thought never occurred, which seems ridiculous to me now. I wish it had! I wanted to be a musician, and then later I wanted to teach music. I loved teaching, especially one on one, though now I realize that what I was really doing was just delving into people’s brains and learning what made them tick, which is not all that different from what I’m doing now! I think teaching was great training for developing characters.

What did you consider most challenging about writing The Dark Unwinding, or writing in general?
I think my toughest challenge so far has been learning to how to find a way to please others while pleasing myself. When you’re getting critiqued from several different sources (agent, editor, critique group) it can be hard to find ways to solve problems that are obviously problems, but in a way that still makes the story uniquely yours. I think I’m still working on this. Probably always will!

What was your inspiration for Katharine?
Well, she’s definitely a little like Jane Eyre in her strong-willed practicality, but she’s also got a liberal dash of Anne Shirley when she puts on those roller skates and goes sliding down hills.

Is there something that makes The Dark Unwinding stand out?
That’s a difficult question, Sara, especially when you’re talking about your own work! But I think maybe what makes my book different from other YA out there is that it’s not easily defined, it’s historical (only different), gothic (only different), steampunk (only different) and romance (only different). And maybe that it feels a more like a classic than most books out there, though with structure and language that is a touch more modern.

Thanks so much to Sharon for the wonderful interview! I definitely think that The Dark Unwinding is unique to YA!


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At September 6, 2012 at 5:23 PM , Anonymous Alyssa Susanna said...

I LOVE historical, and I like steampunk. Kady Cross's series is pretty good. The Girl in the Steel Corset was okay, but The Girl in the Clockwork Collar was even better.

Thanks for the post and giveaway!

At September 6, 2012 at 6:14 PM , Blogger TayteH said...

Steampunkk. :D

At September 8, 2012 at 5:45 AM , Anonymous Christina K. said...

Love both! This book sounds like the perfect combination of these genres:) Thank you:)


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